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Honor 10 vs OnePlus 6 vs LG G7 vs Galaxy S9 Plus vs Pixel 2 XL


Honor 10 front no notch

It used to be you had to spend a fortune to get a good smartphone. Over the years, however, that wallet-drying requirement fell to the wayside as brands like Honor and OnePlus produced excellent smartphones without exorbitant price tags.

Their latest devices, the Honor 10 and OnePlus 6, continue that trend of “affordable flagships,” but how do they compete against the higher-priced competition? We pit Honor 10 and OnePlus 6 against the LG G7 ThinQ, Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, and Google Pixel 2 XL.

Let’s begin with arguably the most controversial aspect of smartphones today: the notch. The Honor 10, OnePlus 6, and G7 ThinQ feature notches at the top that allow for taller displays with awkward aspect ratios. The Galaxy S9 Plus and Pixel 2 XL don’t have the feature.

If you fall into the large camp of people who dislike the notch, the Honor 10, OnePlus 6, and G7 ThinQ include the ability to “turn off” the notch. It’s still there, though.

Your eyes might gravitate toward the notch, but most of the time, they will be on the actual display. Even on this front, there are key differences in size, display type, and resolution.

For those into VR, neither the Honor 10 nor OnePlus 6 will fit the bill. Even with its Full HD+ display, the Honor 10 has an LCD screen — a no-go for VR. The OnePlus 6’s display is AMOLED, which is better for VR, but the Full HD+ resolution does not provide enough pixels for your virtual adventures.

The G7 ThinQ’s display packs more than enough pixels, but it’s also of the LCD variety. That means the Galaxy S9 Plus and Pixel 2 XL are your only options in this comparison if you consume VR content, since they feature AMOLED displays with high resolutions.

  Honor 10 OnePlus 6 LG G7 ThinQ Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus Google Pixel 2 XL
Display 5.84-inch FullView LCD display
2,280 x 1,080 resolution
19:9 aspect ratio
6.28-inch AMOLED
2,280 x 1,080 resolution
19:9 aspect ratio
6.1-inch LCD FullVision display
3,120 x 1,440 resolution
1,000-nit brightness
19.5:9 aspect ratio
6.2-inch Curved Super AMOLED
2,960 x 1,440 resolution
18.5:9 aspect ratio
6.0-inch P-OLED
2,560 x 1,440 resolution
18:9 aspect ratio
SoC HiSilicon Kirin 970 Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 U.S.: Qualcomm Snapdragon 845

Global: Samsung Exynos 9810

Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
GPU Mali G72 MP-12 Adreno 630 Adreno 630 Adreno 630 (Snapdragon)
Mali G72 MP-18 9 (Exynos)
Adreno 540
RAM 4/6GB 6/8GB 4/6GB 6GB 4GB
Storage 64/128GB 64/128/256GB 64/128GB 64/128/256GB 64/128GB
MicroSD No No Yes Yes No

If you do not much care for VR or AR, think about whether you prefer LCD or AMOLED, notch or no notch, and high-resolution displays. None of these displays are bad by any means, so it really comes down to your preferences.

Moving to processors, the Honor 10 features Huawei’s in-house Kirin 970 chipset. The OnePlus 6, G7 ThinQ, and Galaxy S9 Plus all feature the Snapdragon 845. The Pixel 2 XL makes do with the older Snapdragon 835.

Huawei and Honor claimed the Kirin 970 bested the Snapdragon 835 and 845 in certain benchmarks, which is good for on-paper comparisons. In the real world, however, any of these five smartphones performs perform as you well as you could hope.

None of these phones are lacking in RAM, either. The OnePlus 6 in particular features up to 8GB of RAM. The Honor 10 and G7 ThinQ feature either 4GB or 6GB of RAM, while the Galaxy S9 Plus and Pixel 2 XL feature 6GB and 4GB of RAM, respectively.

Storage options are similar across the board, as every phone in this comparison includes at least 64GB of built-in storage. If you are a microSD card fan, your only options here are the G7 ThinQ and Galaxy S9 Plus.

The NPU in the Honor 10’s Kirin 970 automatically detects the scene and adjusts the camera settings accordingly.

The camera system is usually an area of compromise in affordable smartphones. However, the Honor 10 and OnePlus 6 seem to at least keep pace with the rest. Both phones feature two rear cameras and beefy selfie sensors.

The Honor 10 is the only phone in this comparison to lack optical image stabilization (OIS), but it is also the only phone here to feature a monochrome sensor. The Honor 10’s cameras also use the Kirin 970’s neural processing unit (NPU) to automatically detect the scene you are in and change the camera settings accordingly.

Honor 10 camera

Not to be outdone, the OnePlus 6 uses large pixels in the primary sensor for better low-light pictures and (hopefully) improved portrait shots. The phone’s selfie camera also supports portrait mode, though the mode will arrive as a future software update.

The G7 ThinQ uses its secondary camera for wide-angle shots, while the Galaxy S9 Plus’ allows for 2X optical zoom. As a neat party trick, the Galaxy S9 Plus’ primary camera features two apertures, a first for any smartphone camera.

The Pixel 2 XL gets by with just one main camera, though it remains one of the best cameras on any smartphone today.

  Honor 10 OnePlus 6 LG G7 ThinQ Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus Google Pixel 2 XL
Cameras Rear
Main camera: 16MP, f/1.8 aperture
Secondary camera: 24MP, f/1.8 aperture, monochrome

Front
24MP, f/2.0 aperture

Rear
Main camera: 16MP, f/1.7 aperture, 1.22μm pixels
Secondary camera: 20MP, f/1.7 aperture, 1.0μm pixels

Front
16MP, f/2.0 aperture, 1.0μm pixels

Rear
Main camera: 16MP, f/1.6 aperture, 71-degree field of view
Secondary camera: 16MP, f/1.9 aperture, 107-degree field of view

Front
8MP, f/1.9 aperture

Rear
Main camera: 12MP, f/1.5 and f/2.4 apertures
Secondary camera: 12MP, f/2.4 aperture, telephoto (2x optical zoom)

Front
8MP, f/1.7 aperture

Rear
12.2MP, f/1.8 aperture

Front
8MP, f/2.4 aperture

Audio Bottom-firing speaker
3.5mm headphone jack
Bottom-firing speaker
Dirac HD Sound
Dirac Power Sound
3.5mm headphone jack
Boombox Speaker
DTS:X 3D Surround Sound
Hi-Fi Quad DAC
3.5mm headphone jack
3.5mm headphone jack
Stereo speakers
Tuned by AKG
No 3.5mm headphone jack
Audio over USB Type-C
Front stereo speakers
Battery 3,400mAh 3,300mAh 3,000mAh 3,500mAh 3,520mAh
IP Rating No No IP68 IP68 IP67
Software Android 8.1 Oreo
EMUI 8.1
Android 8.1 Oreo
OxygenOS
Android 8.0 Oreo Android 8.0 Oreo Android 8.1 Oreo
Dimensions and weight 149.6 x 71.2 x 7.7mm
153g
155.7 x 75.4 x 7.75mm
177g
153.2 x 71.9 x 7.9mm
162g
158.1 x 73.8 x 8.5mm
189g
157.9 x 76.7 x 7.9mm
175g
Colors Phantom Blue, Phantom Green, Midnight Black, Glacier Grey Mirror Black, Midnight Black, Silk White Platinum Gray, Aurora Black, Moroccan Blue, Raspberry Rose Midnight Black, Coral Blue, Lilac Purple, Titanium Grey Just Black, Black & White

Another area of compromise is with sound, where the Honor 10 and OnePlus 6 unfortunately fall a bit short. Both feature bottom firing speakers, but at least each phone features a headphone jack.

The G7 ThinQ also sports a bottom firing speaker and headphone jack. The phone also includes a Hi-Fi DAC and uses its internals as a resonance chamber for louder sound when set on a flat surface.

The Galaxy S9 Plus and Pixel 2 XL are the only phones in this comparison with stereo speakers, though the Pixel puts both speakers on the front and omits the headphone jack. Meanwhile, the Galaxy S9 Plus keeps the trusty standard and uses its earpiece and bottom-firing speaker to push out sound.

Every phone in this comparison features at least a 3,000mAh battery and fast charge capabilities. If wires are not your thing, the G7 ThinQ and Galaxy S9 Plus also offer wireless charging.

The Honor 10 and OnePlus 6 might have respectably-sized batteries, but their lack of IP ratings make them weird outliers. Even mid-range smartphones like the Moto X4 feature some sort of IP rating, so it is odd to see two “affordable flagships” not rated for dust and water resistance.

According to OnePlus, the company tested the OnePlus 6 to make sure it can survive a drop in a puddle or a walk in the rain. Also, the Honor 10 might be able to survive similar scenarios. Even so, a lack of an IP rating means you should be a bit more careful about where you use the phones.

Finally, the Honor 10, OnePlus 6, G7 ThinQ, Galaxy S9 Plus, and Pixel 2 XL all run Android Oreo out of the box. The Honor 10 features the polarizing EMUI software skin, while the OnePlus 6 keeps things simple with OxygenOS.

The G7 ThinQ and Galaxy S9 Plus also feature scaled-back software skins compared to their predecessors, while the Pixel 2 XL offers the cleanest version of Android around.

No longer does spending less than $600 feel like you get a below-average smartphone experience.

As with the notch, the software might make or break your buying decision. If you want up-to-date software, then stop here and get the Pixel 2 XL. If you do not mind slower updates in exchange for more features, the OnePlus 6, G7 ThinQ, and Galaxy S9 Plus fit the bill.

If you want more of a hybrid between iOS and Android, which still manages to be speedy, the Honor 10 is for you.

Regardless of which phone you get, we have come a long way when it comes to phones like the Honor 10 and OnePlus 6. No longer does spending less than $600 mean that you get a below-average experience.

The Honor 10 and OnePlus 6 more than hold their own against more expensive flagships. What do you think? If given the chance, which phone would you buy?





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